Outcome of Measure S, Measure T and Rent Board Still in Doubt as Many Votes Remain to be Counted (News Analysis)

By Rob Wrenn
Wednesday November 07, 2012 - 08:58:00 AM

It appears that many votes in Berkeley have yet to be counted. A quick comparison with 2008 election results shows that either there was an extraordinary drop in turnout in Berkeley or as many as 25,000 votes have yet to be counted.

For instance, the final results from 2008 show at total of 56,270 votes cast for mayor. So far the results from Berkeley show only 32,661 votes cast for mayor.

Votes remaining to be counted would include absentee ballots dropped at the polls and provisional votes cast at the polls. It probably also includes some other absentee ballots, perhaps those that arrived at the county closer to the election. 

Voters who voted at the polls rejected both Measure S and Measure T. Initial absentees favored both measures. When all the votes are counted, both Measure S and Measure T may pass. The initial absentees favored Measure T by a relatively narrow 53.41%, but Measure T is now losing 15,867 to 15,744. That 123 vote edge could disappear when all the votes are counted. 

Similarly, Measure S is now losing 17,411 to 16,356; Measure S was favored by about 58% of the initial absentee votes reported at the beginning of the count last night. 

In the Rent Board race, Judy Shelton and Asa Dodsworth from the Progressive Affordable Housing slate are in first and third place with 12,373 votes and 10,874 votes respectively. In second place is Judy Hunt from the TUFF slate with 11,525. They are all likely to win when all the votes are counted. 

Alejandro Soto-Vigil, of the Affordable Housing slate, is in fourth place with 10,370 votes, followed by Igor Tregub, on the same slate, with 10,248, and incumbent TUFF slate member Nicole Drake with 9799. Further behind are Kiran Shinoy and Jay James of the TUFF slate with 8386 and 7122 votes respectively. It’s possible that Nicole Drake will garner fourth place, which would result in two members of each slate being elected. But Soto-Vigil or Tregub might also win the fourth slot when all the votes are counted. 

There is also a slim chance that the bond measure for the pools, Measure N, might pass when all the votes are counted. Right now it is at 19,901 yes to 12,134 no. That's 62.12% yes, but the measure needs two-thirds. 

Stay tuned for updates. Hopefully county officials will, sometime today, be able to estimate the number of votes remaining to be counted in Berkeley.